Mixed developments are impacting the UK’s public hearing-services. Regional audiology services are making gains or losses around the UK, based on budgets – but research into providing national school hearing tests for children aged 4 to 6 is under way.
These school-based hearing tests, if rolled out nationally, will be a vital link in the hearing-check system between routine newborn hearing tests and families or schools proactively responding to doubts about a child’s hearing.
Cuts To NHS Hearing Services
In the NHS sector, four in ten audiology units have seen cuts, but hospitals in East Lancashire are investing in hearing-units, according to press reports.
Read more: UK’s NHS hearing services ‘being cut’
School Kids Need Hearing & Speech Services
Last month, Ofsted, the UK’s education watchdog, published a report that said specialist education services are ‘vital’ for children with hearing issues. The report summary is online, with the full report at www.ofsted.org.uk.
This development resulted after press reports in summer 2012, that school supports for deaf children would be curtailed during the new academic year.
In Dorset meantime, £244,000 worth of extra speech and language therapy was granted to children in the region, after a focused campaign by parents.